Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Training Weekend in Madison





On Friday Jen, Cindy, and I headed over to Madison for our first training weekend on the Madison Ironman course. Once we arrived in Madison and got all checked into the hotel we headed over to the bar next door for a quick appetizer before the training weekend officially started. Friday we spent the night meeting everyone that was part of the group, going over the bike course, and the schedule of the training weekend. Knowing we had an early start on Saturday, we were in bed early.

Saturday morning we got up at 5:45 just in time to get breakfast and head out the door for an open water swim at Fireman's Park. We spent most of the swim working on sighting, drafting, and positioning to get started. Dwight on of the guys leading the weekend also filled us with tips to help us through situations such as when our goggles get water in them or get knocked off. To finish our swim, we had our wetsuits stripped off-just like at ironman.

We then headed back to the hotel grabbed our bikes and nutrition for the days bike ride. Once we got going we headed to Morona Terrace which was about 16 miles from the hotel, where we got a chance to practice biking up and down the helix of the ramp (this is part of the ironman course-the coming and going from the transition area). We then headed back to Verona biking the stick (the out and back section of the bike course) before coming to the loop. On the bike ride the groups got a little messed up and I ended up with the A group, Cindy got lost, and Jen was where she was suppose to be with the B group-but it got worked out after our little gathering at Ma's and Pa's. One of the guys leading the training weekend had parents that live right at the start of loop so they had us over to regroup and refuel.

The loop is about 40 miles long and it contains all the hills. We were warned about the "Big Four" these were the most significant hills all having something special about them such as steepness, being windy, or having the inclines really close to another not allowing for you to get "free speed" from another downhill. We ended up riding one loop of the course-in ironman we will do two loops of the course.

Following our ride we headed back to the hotel where we spent time working on core strengthening exercises, learning about nutrition, and talked about the swim and run courses. Then at about 8:45 that night we headed over to Ma and Pa's for dinner.

Sunday was a early morning as well, again getting up at 5:45 for breakfast before heading out for a swim in Lake Monona. We ended up swimming approximately 1.5 miles-Jen was the speed demon! I took it a bit easy since my shoulder was acting up. To finish up the swim again we got our wetsuits stripped off and ran up the helix (to practice for ironman day-yep we run up the helix). Then Brian quickly showed us where we would be picking up our transition bag and changing room were located.

We then made our way back to our cars for a quick clothes change and get ready for the run. The plan was to run on loop of the run (ironman day will be two loops) equaling 13.1 miles. The run went well-Cindy and I should start our own pacing company! Cindy kept the group at a comfortable pace and I controlled the 5 & 1's. Cindy and I left the group for a short time to make a pit stop and the group was relieved to have us back once we returned.

After the run, we hung out with the group for a bit longer talking ironman training weekends and strategies for race day. I was starving and couldn't shove another peanut butter sandwich down my throat, so Cindy and I headed over the Irish pub for food. I got my yummy egg sandwich!

Cindy and I decided to stay another night in Madison hoping to get in another loop on the ironman course but the wind had picked up significantly so we only biked a bit in Madison.

After biking we got cleaned up headed to Target so that Cindy could get a outfit for work on Monday. We then had some awesome Mexican food for dinner. Monday we were on the road by 3:30 am so that Cindy could be back in time to meet her rep at work and I could lead swim club. I didn't get much swimming in Monday.

Today, I headed over to Moore Lake LTF and swam about 1200 yards. I plan to head to the P2 practice tonight.

Thursday, June 25, 2009


Okay finally, I have a little time to update my blog. I have been busy with the usual-work, school, and training. Over the past week, I have kept up with my training for the most part.

Last Sunday(the 14th) I took the day off to recover from the half ironman the previous day. I felt good-not much soreness which I found surprising except my right shoulder. The shoulder stuff started last year when training for IMLOO.

Monday, I had swim club and headed out for a short bike ride (since I skipped my workout from Sunday). Legs were a bit tired so I took it easy, only biking 21 miles. I did up getting my monthly massage to workout the kinks in my shoulder-it loosened it up a bit but its still not feeling "normal".

Tuesday was my day to lead run club but since it was pouring outside nobody showed up. I ended up going home and getting on the trainer for a little over a hour-can you talk about boring!

Wednesday I did a short bike ride and a swim at the Moore Lake LTF. I just took it easy during the swim since my shoulder has been acting up. I focused on my form and did a lot drills.

Thursday, I trained with P2. We did race pace 20 minute tempo rides with 5 minutes easy in between. We then followed up the workout with a 30 minute run (15 minutes race pace tempo with 15 minutes easy).

Friday, I biked the Square Lake sprint course and did a few hill repeats on county road 7 in Marine. My legs were really tired from the previous days workout. I didn't end up getting in my intended run and swim.

Saturday, I took the day off and headed to Duluth so that I could watch my friends run Grandmas Marathon.

Sunday, I ended up getting in only a short 3.5 mile run being it started raining and I had to work.

Monday, I had swim club-I ended up only getting about 1000 yards partly because my time taken up by the swimmers that come and my shoulder still wasn't feeling right. My balance was really off in the water. I ended up meeting Cindy for a 95 minute bike ride in the morning.

Tuesday, I trained with P2. We ran for about a hour -20 minutes to Montreal Hill. 20 minutes hill repeats on Montreal hill(it felt like 3 hours of hill repeats with the heat!) and 20 minutes back to the MAC track for a 1 mile at race pace. I was dead!

Wednesday (today) I trained with P2. We spent about a hour practicing sighting, drafting, entering, and exiting the water. My should was really bothering afterward! We then followed the workout up with a 30 minute bike (15 minutes tempo, 15 minutes easy).

Tomorrow, I have clinical during the day and the Gillette Gala in the evening-then packing for my training weekend in Madison.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Liberty 1/2 Ironman Race Report



I raced Liberty 1/2 Ironman this weekend this was my second half ironman (second time I did this race). As you read on my previous blog post I got Moon Goddess (my bike) all dressed up in her best attire for her 2009 debut race. Friday, I took Moon Goddess for a short 20 minute practice run so that I could test the shifting and make sure nothing was rubbing. I then picked up a few last minute things at Grand Performance before trudging through the swamp of Turtle Lake with Cindy. Cindy and I met for a short (approximately 1/2 mile) lake swim. The lake was extremely weedy and mushy! We didn't want to spend a lot of time out in the lake being there was a lot of boat traffic and our upcoming race the next day.

After the swim we did a quick clothes change in the parking lot before heading over to pick up my race packet. I ran into a few other P2ers at packet pickup. We then met up with Jen for a pre-race pasta dinner at Macaroni Grill. During dinner Cindy and I played a little joke on Jen-a man came up to our table and asked us if he could sing a song to us and Cindy said sure. The man asked us what song he should sing and the only song that popped into my head was happy birthday. He asked who's birthday it was and we said it was Jen's so the man sang her some opera song in Italian-it was so loud (I thought Jen was going to kill us!).

I spent the rest of the night getting everything put together for the race in the morning. I didn't get much sleep which is pretty common for me.

Race Morning:
I got my car packed up and headed over to Baker Park. I attempted to shove some oatmeal down my throat without much luck-only got a couple bites in. Once I arrived, I got my gear all set up in the transition area and before I knew it was time to head down to the beach for the pre-race meeting. I never had time for a warm-up I spent too much time gabbing with all my tri friends.

The swim was tough for me! The swim started with me between two women that practically were beating me to death! I ended up pulling back so they could be on their way. I had some problems sighting on the swim since my goggles had fogged up. Once I hit the turn around the sun was in our eyes-I really couldn't see a darn thing! I would look for splashing and swim toward that and before I knew I was literally on top of the person-this happened 3-4 times! I felt all over the place on the swim! By the time I got to an area that I could reach the bottom I was so disoriented and nausea!

I ran out to the transition area as I struggled with my zipper on my wetsuit again! I got through the transition area trying to remember all the stuff that coach taught us over the past couple of weeks at practice.

I got out on my bike started off saw Jen and wished her good luck and told her to kick some butt. She ended up passing me about a block later! The bike was hard for me too! I had a hard time catching my groove. I worked on trying to shove some supplements in my mouth hoping that they would help me feel a bit better and give me some energy. I swore everyone and their grandma passed me on the bike!

Once I reached the transition area, I quickly changed out my shoes and I was off on my run.

I started my run and my leg felt actually decent. I was wiped and really needed some energy/electrolytes. I made it to the first water stop and was surprised by the fact that they didn't stock the water stops with enduralytes (like they had last year and they advertised this year). Being I was still feeling nausea, I couldn't stomach hammer gels or drink-I was left with water (not good on a warm day and already feeling depleted); I managed to keep a steady pace despite. I ended up passing Jen about mile 6, I wished her good luck and kept going (I knew that if I stopped I was not going to finish). I made it to mile 9 before having a complete mental breakdown! The water stop had run out of water, I was feeling nausea, and I didn't have any energy! I re-grouped my thoughts and kept going. I made it to the next water stop and I was LOOPY! I had asked for a coke and a water-then went over to the table and started to peruse the to see what else was there. I took ONE animal cracker and realized that the volunteered was looking at me with some concern, so I took off! I kept going seeing a few people along the way that I knew which was great! Coach was waiting for me with a little less than a mile left to go. I came into the finish strong-I don't know how but I did!

I ended up with a finish time of 5:44 (a PR by almost 10 minutes!)

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Getting Moon Goddess Ready!




Moon Goddess has a protector! Watch cat Joey!

Tonight I spent my time getting Moon Goddess (my bike) ready to race on Saturday. I shined her up and put on my HED race wheels after I spent A LOT of time trying to get them pumped up (in a quite crazy fashion let me tell you!). I'm really excited to get out any try my race wheels out and ride the Liberty course this weekend. In the midst of getting Moon Goddess ready, I had to paint my toe nails Cervelo Red (I named it that after I matched it to my bike)-I know that I'm a dork!

I spent most of the day down at the U running from meeting to meeting during clinical today. I have been really enjoying my clinical experience at the U although its completely different than Gillette.

Following clinical today, I trained with P2. Today's workout consisted of a 45 minute bike from the Pit along Shepard Rd in St. Paul. My friend Kim ended up having some bike problems along the ride, so Eric, Kim and I took it easy a bit and try to figure out the problem with Grandma (her bike). Following our bike, Eric and I headed out for a short 15 minute run.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009


Just finished up another busy week-I know the "normal" work week is Monday through Friday, but in the nursing profession "normal" doesn't exist! We where do I start?

Saturday, I ended up doing my training inside since the weather SUCKED (there isn't any other way to put it and my friends that raced this weekend would agree!) I got in a pretty good workout despite it was spent on the trainer and on the treadmill. I ended up riding for a hour to the Madison video. I then got in 7 miles running-that about my threshold on the treadmill.

After getting home from my work-the excitement began! Of course not good excitement! Joey (my kitty) was acting under the weather, so I called the ER vet to see what they thought about his symptoms. The ER vet tech encouraged me to bring in Joey to have him checked out and so they could treat his symptoms. I hurried to the vet (take into account it is 8 pm and I needed to be to work at 11 pm- I didn't sleep much after work since I needed to get my workout in) and the tech took a history, then quickly rushed Joey in back for an exam. About 15 minutes later, the tech came back into the room and said that Joey needed to have emergency surgery to clear a blockage in his pee pee:( I tell you-seriously! So $1000 later Joey is doing better-but he will have to have be on a special diet for the rest of his life and regular follow ups with the vet-if it continues they will have to cut his pee pee off! Good thing he isn't trying to impress any girl kitties!

After a long night at work and the stress from Joey's situation, I was exhausted and skipped my workout on Sunday.

Monday, I had swim club and didn't get in much of a workout which was totally fine since my coach scheduled in a mini taper for the 1/2 ironman this weekend coming up.

Tuesday-Another day of crappy weather and a day of running from the work (not leaving until 9 am due to the crazy night!) to school to the vet. I did manage to get a workout in. I ended up running around the track at Moore Lake LTF. I did about 7 miles. I did some speed work. I crashed once I got home not even to hear the phone ring! I got canceled from work!

Today, I had clinical down at the U and then rushed to Lake Nokomis for P2 practice. We spent most of the time working on tri specific drills (sighting, drafting, etc...) we then worked on transitions ( I hope this helps, since I have the SLOWEST transitions! When looking at my transition times you would think that ate lunch and took a nap!). We then finished our workout up with a short bike ride.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Less than 100 days!!!!

We have less than 100 days until Ironman Madison. As I'm sitting here writing my blog entry, I was thinking that I will be hopefully further than the half way point on the run portion of Ironman Madison! Okay-I going to start my first freak out!

Today I met my friend Margarita for my first open water swim of the season. Prior to me getting there, some other swimmers (assuming triathletes) got caught swimming across Lake Nokomis and were ticketed so we had decided not to chance it. A $350 ticket or more triathlon gear-we chose more triathlon gear! We ended up swimming the length of the swimming area back and forth for about 45 minutes.

The water was a bit chilly getting in but nice once we got started swimming. After we swam we hung out on the beach to dry off and feel the last projected rays of sun over the next couple of days.

Wednesday was the first National Day of Running and of course sponsored some running events. I was interested to know that people at the Coon Rapids club had already logged over 40 miles before the first organized run of the day-they had two. It was fun to hang out with the run club on Wednesday! I attended both run sessions logging almost 10 miles of running that day. Prior to my runs I got a chance to hand out and educate people on Aquaphor.

Yesterday I trained with P2. We started off with a 60 minute easy ride and then headed back to St. Thomas for transition practice with the team. Coach had us line up and counted as we practiced putting on our helmets and shoes-aaaahhhhh! We then practiced running and mounting our bikes-AAAAHHHH!!!! Then we practiced tightening our shoes while in motion on the bike-AAAAHHHH!!!! Finally, it was taking our shoes off while biking-AAAHHHH!!!! I avoided crashing my bike into a parked car or tipping over but I don't know that it was any faster!

We then finished our workout with a short 15 minute easy run.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Sunday was the inaugural Minneapolis 1/2 marathon-put on by Team Ortho. Earlier that week I hmm'd and haa'd around whether or not I should sign up for the 1/2 marathon. Knowing that I wanted to watch my friends run and finish the race I decided to do it. I have a pre-race routine that I religiously practice before all races to prepare to gather my things so they are ready to go easily in the morning-I didn't do that this time! And I showed up for the race with out my sunglasses or a hat-not good!

Anyways, I went into the race with the decision that I will take for the race being I'm racing Liberty in two weeks and I hope to PR there. The narrow roads were filled with runners which made it difficult to maneuver your way through the crowd, however I was okay with that since I was going to hold back and my legs were a bit crampy. The race course was challenging with some pretty significant hills.

Overall the race went well considering I wasn't trying to PR. My overall time was a 1:52.


This week I have a much needed recovery week. Monday was was either a day off or an easy swim. I ended up swimming at Moore Lake for 45 minutes.

Yesterday, I trained with P2. We ended up running 7 easy miles.

Today is the 1st national running day!